EU Commission annual report: Tensions in East Mediterranean increased due to Turkey

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Tensions in the East Mediterranean region increased due to Turkey, an annual European Commission report on EU enlargement said on Tuesday, in its review of countries working towards accession to the union.

In its report, the Commission said, “Tensions in the East Mediterranean region, undermining regional stability and security, increased due to Turkey’s actions and statements challenging the right of the Republic of Cyprus to exploit hydrocarbon resources in the its Exclusive Economic Zone, provocative actions towards Greece, including Turkish flights over Greek inhabited areas, and the signature of the two memoranda of understanding with the National Accord Government of Libya on security cooperation and delimitation of maritime jurisdiction, that ignore the sovereign rights of Greece in the areas concerned.”

These actions “run counter to the EU interests, violate international law and undermine efforts to resume dialogue and negotiations, and to pursue de-escalation,” the report noted, adding that the Commission “stands in full solidarity with Cyprus and Greece.”

It called on Turkey to take concrete steps toward creating an environment conducive to dialogue and to commit itself unequivocally to good neighbourly relations, international agreements and the peaceful settlement of disputes in accordance with the United Nations Charter, taking recourse to the International Court of Justice, if necessary.

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